I love hummus. To be honest, if I didn’t, my father might have disowned me by now — hummus runs thick through my half-Egyptian veins.
While my family has a traditional hummus recipe, it is less of a dip than it is a sauce. And although it is really, really good, sometimes I just want a thicker, dippable hummus. So, I make a recipe up!… sometimes accidentally.
I don’t know if this has ever happened to any of you, but some brands of canned chickpeas are harder than others, and since I buy whatever is cheapest when I’m shopping, sometimes I get stuck with a bunch of tough beans. Sadly, my hand-held food processor can’t handle the hard little buggers, as my sister and I found out this weekend. We were making a batch of hummus to take with us to the Wolfe Island Music Festival (like the good little hippies we are), and we were struggling a little bit.
So what did we do?
We improvised, naturally! While I mashed the chickpeas individually with a fork, my sister toasted some sunflower seeds to add to the mix. The resulting hummus is chunky, crunchy, and totally satisfying. For best results, make any hummus the day before you plan on serving it — this will give it time to soak up the flavours of the tahine, lemon, and cumin.
1 can of chickpeas, drained
1/4 cup tahine
2 tbsp hot water
4 tbsp lemon juice (or more, depending on your taste)
2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
dash of red pepper flakes
salt and pepper to taste
1. Drain and rinse your chickpeas and transfer to a bowl. With a fork, mash the chickpeas until they are coarsely mashed, leaving some chickpeas whole if desired.
2. In a measuring cup, combine the tahine with the hot water and stir. This will soften the tahine and allow it to be mixed evenly throughout the hummus.
3. Add the tahine mixture to the chickpeas and stir. Then add the lemon juice, cumin, red pepper, and salt. Mix thoroughly to combine.
4. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan on medium-low heat without oil. When it is hot, add the sunflower seeds. Watch the seeds carefully as they toast, stirring often to make sure they do not burn. When they are browned, remove them from the heat and add them to the hummus.
5. Season with more tahine, lemon juice, cumin, red pepper, and salt and pepper as needed. Serve with vegetable sticks, warmed pita bread, tortilla chips, or your own dipping favourites.